CHF Continues to Support Chardon’s Journey to Healing

The Next Step

We Are Chardon

The Chardon Healing Fund (CHF) is pleased to announce our next step in the Chardon Journey to Healing. CHF will be holding a strategic planning session on September 28 that will include community members, local organizations, students, teachers and administrators, mental health agencies, and many others.

This meeting will be facilitated by David Cooperrider. David is the Fairmount Minerals Professor of Social Entrepreneurship at the Weatherhead School of Management, Case Western Reserve University, and Faculty Director at the Center for Business as an Agent of World Benefit at Case. He is also a founding theorist of Appreciative Inquiry which is a co-evolutionary process to discover the best in people, their organizations, and the relevant world around them.

The planning session is designed to share information with community members on the various healing supports and services currently available. In addition, the community will engage in sharing ideas and input as the Chardon Healing Fund moves forward in determining the best way for the group to achieve its defined mission.

The Chardon Healing Fund invites everyone to share their views, experiences, and ideas as we co-create a collective vision of healing for the community’s future. Members of the community are encouraged to complete a brief survey, which is available via the Chardon Schools website.

The Journey to Healing began on February 28 when the Chardon Healing Fund was first established. Since inception, the CHF has received over $926,000 in donations, of which 100 percent of these funds are reserved for the benefit of the victims, their families, and long-term healing of the community.

The CHF volunteer advisory board consists of eleven community members, including Chardon High School graduates, parents, business leaders, and public officials. Their role is to ensure that all funds are appropriately allocated.

How the Donations are Being Used

To date, of the $380,000 that has been distributed by the CHF, approximately 82% has supported the immediate needs of the six families who were directly impacted. In addition, the CHF has facilitated ongoing meetings with each of the families in an effort to best understand their current and potential needs. Most recently, the CHF was able to provide a handicapped accessible vehicle to one of the survivors of the Chardon High School tragedy, Nick Walczak.

The CHF has also sponsored numerous events for students, schools, and the community at large to promote healing. More specifically, they sponsored the Actively Caring for People presentation and program sustained by Virginia Tech, a visit to the Camp Asbury ropes course by Mr. Ricci and his class, as well as partially funding a School Resource Officer for the Chardon local schools.

Please join us as we continue this Journey to Healing by completing the on-line survey which can be found here. With many steps and much work still left, we look forward to your participation. Your voice will be heard as we create an actively caring community. For more information, please contact the United Way offices at 440-285-2261.


Kimm Leininger
Author: Kimm Leininger

Kimm Leininger has served as the Executive Director of United Way Services of Geauga County since 2003. Prior to this, she served as the Executive Director of WomenSafe for five years and as a hospital social worker for three years. Kimm has a Bachelor of Arts degree from Miami University and a Master of Social Work degree from The Ohio State University. She is also an alumnus of Leadership Geauga County, 2002. Kimm currently serves on the boards of the Geauga County P-16 Initiative, Northeast Ohio Regional P-16 Council, Chardon Healing Fund and Chardon Rotary Club. Kimm lives in Geauga County with her husband and three children. She enjoys spending her free time with her family, as well as coaching her children in various sporting activities.